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  •  A little bit of Ireland existed along third ave.. (1+ / 0-)
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    marykk

    in New York City.  It existed in the mostly Irish bars on every corner from around 50th street all the way up to the eighties, where Yorkvile and the German influence, along with some Eastern European (Hungarian) establishments started to predominate.

    I moved to a rooming house in the late fifties, that was run by an Irish superintendent, and his family who lived in the basement of one of the houses on East 75th street.  The third avenue elevated trains had just been torn down signaling the beginning of the end of these "upscale" tenements, as high rise apartment buildings started to take their place.

    But every night I was lulled to sleep by the strains of songs such as "Irish Soldier Boy" and other soulful evocations of the Irish suffering under the British yoke.  With each hour, with each drink the depth of the feeling increased.

    Slowly these bars, and these working class men were replaced by the new immigrants, not from impoverished lands but from the best universities.   They were called Yuppies, and their culture and value was born not of starvation, but of the American success.

    I caught the last notes of that musical expression of suffering and loneliness that these bars helped to assuage.

    It was really a Golden age for New York, with the prosperity of the post war era, and a coexistance of all the various ethnicities.  Crime was low, with people comfortable to spend the night in the open in central park without fear.  Housing was cheap, and work was plentiful for all.

    And long before the civil rights revolution, the only criteria for getting a job in my industry, which was commercial printing, was that you could do the job, meaning you could help the owner, who was a guy just like you who had started a small company, make his rent, pay his workers and make a profit.

    There was no internet, not even in anyones dreams. So, if late at night, you wanted to share your thoughts, your feelings, your memories, you couldn't do it from your home computer.  You would have to drop in at a bar, put a quarter on a table for a shot, and hope that the person next to you was up for a conversation.

    Along third avenue, you had a pretty good chance of this happening.  

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